Home > Agriculture > DNA and Agricultural Yields

DNA and Agricultural Yields

By: Ian Murnaghan BSc (hons), MSc - Updated: 28 Dec 2012 | comments*Discuss
 
Dna Agricultural Yields Genetically

You may wonder how DNA could possibly relate to agricultural yields, but the link is actually quite an interesting one that is a curious mix of nature and technology. Agricultural yields can be increased through the use of genetic modification (GM), which relies on taking coveted properties from one organism and inserting these genes into another organism to create those same desired effects. The idea behind increasing agricultural yields is to provide more crops at reduced costs. While genetically modified crops have generally been created to feed people in developed nations, research has suggested that their use in developing countries has been far more beneficial.

Benefits of Improving Agricultural Yields

One of the key benefits of improved agricultural yields has been that they are thought to help battle poverty and hunger in developing and third world countries. In fact, in one trial of cotton, yields were eighty percent higher in GM crops than in non-modified crops. Even researchers were surprised at the enormous difference between the two types of crops. The increase in agricultural yields is considered a sustainable form of development and it also carries the benefit of reduced pesticide use because GM crops are sprayed less frequently than non-GM crops.

Concerns Regarding Technology to Increase Crop Yields

There are, however, still many concerns regarding the practice of increasing agricultural yields through genetic modification. Many environmental crusaders cite that this type of technology has many flaws and that any increase in yield is only temporary because insects and similar pests will eventually become resistant to the GM crops. Still, others argue that even if the benefit is only short-term, it is still a valuable one for farmers in developing nations. Many farmers cannot afford the constantly increasing cost of pesticides and their yields are jeopardised. By using GM crops, the pesticide resistance can allow them to provide greater yields at a reduced cost in terms of pesticides. It is also important to note that tropical climates can bring with them even more difficult pest challenges, which means that pesticide resistant crops become more important in this climate.

Future of GM Crops and Improving Agricultural Yields

The controversy of GM crops will not likely end soon, at least not until long-term studies have been performed to assess their merits, efficacy and safety. The improvement of agricultural yields is a constant and important issue for farmers. Indeed, their profits and livelihood depend on the provision of substantial agricultural yields each year. In fact, the livelihood of the entire community will also depend, in part, on adequate crop yields - particularly in developing nations where staple crops may ultimately provide most of the population's food. The ability to improve these yields through GM crops is an important issue to consider but the long-term implications regarding pesticide resistance must also be acknowledged and addressed.

Research will also hopefully include these concerns and perhaps better GM crops will be developed that can afford consistent and lengthy pesticide resistance. Until that time, alternatives to GM crops should still be considered, specifically ones that do not entail the numerous challenges, questions and controversies of GM crops.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments
  • Rebekka
    Re: DNA and Air Crash Victims
    How does one obtain dna for ancestral testing from a body that's been embalmed? They are holding the body while I find out. Can you…
    26 April 2019
  • Nikita
    Re: DNA Test after Death
    Hello, I just saw your tests online. Great!! I am wondering my mother died about 20 years ago. I have 1/2 of her ashes. I am trying to find…
    29 March 2019
  • Morgz
    Re: An Overview of DNA Functions
    GO CHECK OUT MY NEW CLICKBAIT FORTNITE CHANNEL!!! MORGZCLICKBAITY
    26 March 2019
  • Shegzysnoop
    Re: Using DNA and for Immigration Purposes
    My dna is part of the document that was receive by the consulate from my lawyer in Chicago but surprisingly afelter…
    20 March 2019
  • yoda gaming
    Re: An Overview of DNA Functions
    game i must 3 weeks left to live i have took the kids she has
    19 March 2019
  • Lannette
    Re: DNA Test after Death
    My son was killed n 2018 and was buried can or shall I say could we get a good enough DNA to see if a child who's going on 10 next month…
    14 March 2019
  • Emilina C.
    Re: DNA Test after Death
    My uncle died in March 2017 and there is a probable theory that he was murdered by his wife due to the fact that his reason for being sent to…
    14 March 2019
  • lora
    Re: Using DNA and for Immigration Purposes
    my husband is petioning me, we went our different ways but we werent divorced , i had my son while i was married but…
    14 March 2019
  • Jem
    Re: DNA and Disease Prediction
    Nice work it really helped me with the big project I'm doing in May.
    11 March 2019
  • Brat
    Re: DNA Test after Death
    My daughters father just died yesterday he hasn't been buried or cremated is there any way that we could still do a DNA test to prove he is…
    9 March 2019